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[5] Cato, on the contrary, showed no complaisance whatever, but plainly threatened wrong-doers in his speeches, and loudly cried that the city had need of a great purification. He adjured the people, if they were wise, not to choose the most agreeable physician, but the one who was most in earnest. He himself, he said, was such a physician, and so was Valerius Flaccus, of the patricians. With him as colleague, and him alone, he thought he could cut and sear to some purpose the hydra-like luxury and effeminacy of the time. As for the rest of the candidates, he saw that they were all trying to force their way into the office in order to administer it badly, since they feared those who would administer it well.

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